Posts Tagged ‘Camille Paglia’

LinkSwarm for March 17, 2017

Friday, March 17th, 2017

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Insert your own Irish-related drinking joke here.

  • President Trump’s approval ratings rise.
  • Did Obama use a British intelligence agency to spy on Trump? (Maybe not.)
  • Did the Obama Administration use Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac as a slush fund to pay for ObamaCare?
  • Senate Democrats are paralized what do to over Neil Gorsuch. Everyone agrees Gorsuch is extremely qualified, but the leftwing nutroots are threatening to primary any Democrat who votes to confirm him. (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Finally: “A House panel held a hearing on possibly splitting the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Thursday morning.” (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • In talking about the House GOP’s pathetic ObamaCare replacement, Stephen Green hits the nail on the head: “Congress is warped because the American electorate has yet to accept that other people’s money does eventually run out — and that we are all the other people.” That’s why we need someone committed to reform in the White House, and Greece and Venezuela’s examples fresh in the public’s eye…
  • Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey: “What we reject is immigration without assimilation.” (Hat tip: Sarah Hoyt at Instapundit.)
  • ICE arrests 248 illegal aliens, most in the sanctuary city of Philadelphia. “20 had a conviction and/or pending charges or 48 percent (88 of those arrested had criminal convictions and 32 of those arrested have pending criminal charges). In addition, 50 had been previously removed from the United States and subsequently illegally re-entered.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Meanwhile, in Australia: “Teacher quits after primary school students threaten to behead her.” (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • “Iraqi government forces besieged Islamic State militants around Mosul’s Old City on Thursday, edging closer to the historic mosque from where the group’s leader declared a caliphate nearly three years ago.”
  • Former Democratic Representative Dennis Kucinich says that one of his phonecalls was wiretapped. “If a member of Congress can have his phone tapped, this can happen to anybody.”
  • Ten Senate Democrats are vulnerable in 2018. They’re prime targets for takedowns in the midterm elections. But the process starts now, not then…In order of vulnerability (most to least), the target list features: 1) Joe Donnelly-IN; 2) Bill Nelson-FL; 3) Sherrod Brown-OH; 4) Claire McCaskill-MO; 5) Heidi Heitkamp-ND; 6) Tammy Baldwin-WI; 7) Jon Tester-MN; 8) Joe Manchin-WV; 9) Debbie Stabenow-MI; 10) Bob Casey, Jr.-PA.” Agree with the list, but not the order, since Heitkamp hails from a state Trump won by 36 points. But seeing Stupak bloc flip-flopper Donnelly go down at last would be extremely satisfying…
  • Breakdown of 2016 Presidential race demographics. Least likely to vote for Trump: Black single women. Most likely to vote for Trump: Mormons. Usual poll caveats apply. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Remember convicted felon Brett Kimberlin? There’s always some Kimberlin news floating around the blogsphere, usually in relation to his latest ludicrous lawsuit getting laughed out of court. But this week he made the news for being involved in selling hoax documents designed to bring down Donald Trump. “The entire set of documents appear to have been forged as part of an elaborate scam.” So, like most Kimberlin escapades, the story ends in embarrassing failure. (Hat tip: The Other McCain.)
  • Cenk Uygur: Why the Democratic Party is useless. 1. As with all these critiques of the Democratic Party from the left, it’s right about the party being a corrupt institution for entrenched interests and wrong about America being gung ho for socialism. 2. Boy, that “not being polite” stuff sure helped Democrats recall Scott Walker! 3. “Cenk Uygur” sounds like a dark, forbidding fortress at the edge of Mordor.
  • Holland is the canary in the European coalmine of radical Islamization. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Speaking of Holland, Geert Wilders placed second in Dutch elections, which falls short of a serious challenge to the Islamophillic and Eurocentric establishment.
  • Dear Sen. McCain: (Sigh).
  • Rand Paul fires back: “He makes a really, really strong case for term limits. I think maybe he’s past his prime. I think maybe he’s gotten a little bit unhinged.”
  • Germany wants to fine companies for not censoring fast enough. What do you want to bet that objections to the rousing success of their Muslim immigration policy are first on the list of things to be censored?
  • Camille Paglia has a new book out, and offers up an interview where she talks about modern feminism (against), southern women (for), working class men (for), Michel Foucault (against), and pornography (for).
  • Soros Fellow Flees Country While Wife Arrested For Welfare Scam.” It seems that earning $1.5 million a year at the Washington, D.C., offices of Mayer Brown LLP just wasn’t enough for Fidelis Agbapuruonwu… (Hat tip: Stephen Green at Instapundit.)
  • Three #BlackLivesMatter protestors arrested for beating up a homeless man.
  • Man gets a C when he should have gotten an A for a school assignment. So he did what any of us would have done: Successfully amends the Constitution. (Hat tip: Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett’s Twitter feed.)
  • Dwight has some Austin-related memoes from the police beat.
  • “Coming up next on Most ShockingMormon Justice!”
  • King King burns.
  • He divided them again!
  • Schumer steals again. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Singer Kelly Clarkson is selling her Tennessee mansion. I like how it’s half typical rich-person mansion, and half Bass Pro Shop…
  • LinkSwarm for June 3, 2016

    Friday, June 3rd, 2016

    Another week, another Texas flood. Try to stay dry and enjoy a Friday LinkSwarm:

  • Paglia on Clinton: “If it were a Republican in the crosshairs, Hillary’s shocking refusal to meet with the Inspector General (who interviewed all four of the other living Secretaries of State of the past two decades) would have been the lead item flagged in screaming headlines from coast to coast. Let’s face it—the genuinely innocent do not do pretzel twists like this to cover their asses.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • New York Magazine massively re-edits article on why Hillary won’t debate because the original wasn’t fawning enough.
  • Eight reasons Hillary sucks. Including Obama: “she does not seem to want to run on Ben Rhodes’s foreign policy, Jonathan Gruber’s Obamacare, Lois Lerner’s IRS, Lisa Jackson’s EPA, Eric Holder’s Justice Department, or Barack Obama’s racial healing. And yet she needs Obama’s hard-left base. So far she has rejected her 2008 Annie Oakley, Reagan-Democrat schtick, gambling that her Black Lives (alone) Matter and transgenderism pandering can ensure that she will match Obama’s historic share of the minority vote. But so far it seems just as likely that she will lose more voters among the white working class than she can lease from Obama’s core.”
  • College students are allowed to ask Hillary Clinton original, spontaneous questions that just happen to be scripted by the Clinton campaign. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • At judge’s order, 20,000 documents related to Fast and Furious scandal released. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Trump is right: Some illegal aliens are being lavished with more benefits than our own veterans.
  • How a naval contractor named “Fat Leonard” infiltrated the Navy with bribes, prostitutes and lavish parties. “The Soviets couldn’t have penetrated us better than Leonard Francis.” Our country is in the best of hands. (Hat tip: Dwight.)
  • Oberlin students are among the most precious of snowflakes.
  • More on the same theme. Alas, this morning I just don’t have time to explicate all the manifest idiocies on display by the Social Justice Warrior Campus Cadets…
  • Obama Administration bitch-slapped for attempting ex-post facto regulation. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades HQ.)
  • Columbia was once a basket case and Venezuela a thriving nation on the rise. Thanks to The Magic Power of Socialism™, they’ve switched places.
  • This bitch is so crazy I can’t even keep up with her crazy bitch shit.”
  • Enya: rich crazy cat lady.
  • Flooding-related blackout leads to Texas prison riots.
  • City Manager behind Dallas’ controversial city-owned hotel steps down.
  • If your political party openly calls for the complete destruction of the oil industry, maybe you shouldn’t have your national convention in Houston.
  • Science Fiction writer Gregory Benford on university host escort duties for G. Gordon Liddy, Ray Bradbury, Kurt Vonnegut, and a certain “Tom.”
  • Space City Comic Con turns into an actual con. As in the fraud kind…
  • Swiss open world’s longest tunnel with ceremony featuring marching uniform worker drones, a horned goat god, and a giant flying death baby.
  • Election Update for May 24, 2016

    Tuesday, May 24th, 2016

    Remember: Today is the runoff in Texas! Go vote if you didn’t last week!

    Here are a few tidbits of election news:

  • Trump’s odds to win now top Hillary’s.
  • Trump steps up attacks on Bill Clinton and Hillary’s enabling same. Naturally the press is miffed; they spent two decades burying news of Juanita Broaddrick and Kathleen Willey’s sexual assault allegations against Bill Clinton to protect Democrats, and now Trump is forcing them to mention their names again. (Hat tip: Instapundit.)
  • Liberal commentator Van Jones on how in-the-tank DNC head Debbie Wasserman Schultz is for Hillary. “Debbie, who should be the umpire, who should be the marriage counselor, is coming in harder for Hillary Clinton than she is for herself. That is malpractice. I wish [RNC Chair] Reince Priebus was my party chair. He did a better job of handling the Trump situation than I’ve see my party chair handle this situation.”
  • Camille Paglia:

    Democratic strategists who prophesy a Hillary landslide over Trump are blowing smoke. Hillary is a stodgily predictable product of the voluminous briefing books handed to her by a vast palace staff of researchers and pollsters—a staggeringly expensive luxury not enjoyed by her frugal, unmaterialistic opponent, Bernie Sanders (my candidate). Trump, in contrast, is his own publicist, a quick-draw scrapper and go-for-the-jugular brawler. He is a master of the unexpected (as the Egyptian commander Achillas calls Julius Caesar in the Liz Taylor Cleopatra). The massive size of Hillary’s imperialist operation makes her seem slow and heavy. Trump is like a raffish buccaneer, leaping about the rigging like the breezy Douglas Fairbanks or Errol Flynn, while Hillary is the stiff, sequestered admiral of a bullion-laden armada of Spanish galleons, a low-in-the-water easy mark as they creak and sway amid the rolling swells.

  • Dennis Prager responds to the #NeverTrump crowd: “In the 2016 presidential race, I am not interested in moral purity. I am interested in defeating the left and its party, the Democratic Party. The notion (expressed by virtually every #NeverTrump advocate) that we can live with another four years of a Democratic president is, forgive me, mind-boggling.” (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • David Limbaugh: “There is almost no chance that Clinton would ever govern otherwise than repugnantly. There is a chance that Trump could govern as a conservative on some issues, even if that’s not his natural instinct.”
  • Sony Pictures already had enough problems with its dreadful-looking Ghostbusters reboot without Hillary Clinton honing in on the action.
  • And as long as we’re on the subject, Milo Yiannopoulos weighs in on why it looks so dreadful: “There’s a clichéd cast, clunky dialogue and the outlines of a woefully unimaginative story. The visual effects are Scooby Doo-esque (and not in a good way), and it seems as though — at least from the footage we’ve seen so far — the Ghostbusters reboot will have none of the original’s carefree charm. Even if the cast wasn’t made up of unsexy lesbian janitors, there would be plenty for fans of the franchise to dislike.”
  • Crooked Granny Panderbear is gonna pander. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Faced with a choice between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, a lot of conservatives (myself included) will consider voting for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson. Well, isn’t this a pisser? “He’s Not Conservative and Not Even All That Libertarian.”
  • Virginia’s Democratic governor and Clinton toady Terry McAuliffe is under investigation for accepting campaign contributions from Chinese national Wang Wenliang. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • Ted Cruz may be out of the Presidential race but his delegates fight on. (Hat tip: Conservatives 4 Ted Cruz.)
  • Presidential Race Roundup for March 10, 2016

    Thursday, March 10th, 2016

    Busy working on other stuff, so consider this an “instead of a real update” update:

  • If Marco Rubio and John Kasich had dropped out last week, Ted Cruz would already be ahead of Donald Trump. (Hat tip: Director Blue.)
  • “Cruz has a vastly better chance of defeating Hillary Clinton than Trump.” (Hat tip: Conservatives 4 Ted Cruz.)
  • Nate Silver: “Even if Trump wins both Ohio and Florida, Cruz might run relatively well against him in a one-on-one race from that point forward.” (Hat tip: Conservatives 4 Ted Cruz.)
  • Guy who voted for Rubio says the best way he can serve his country is getting out of the race.
  • Dear GOP: Unite behind Ted Cruz or Deserve Your Fate.
  • Camille Paglia praises Trump’s candor.
  • Trump rally T-shirts spelling out “Make America White Again” debunked.
  • Camille Paglia On Feminism (Again)

    Wednesday, December 16th, 2015

    The always outspoken and quotable Camille Paglia has another interview up on feminism, this one with Spiked. A few excerpts:

  • The problem with too much current feminism, in my opinion, is that even when it strikes progressive poses, it emanates from an entitled, upper-middle-class point of view. It demands the intrusion and protection of paternalistic authority figures to project a hypothetical utopia that will be magically free from offence and hurt. Its rampant policing of thought and speech is completely reactionary, a gross betrayal of the radical principles of 1960s counterculture, which was inaugurated in the US by the incendiary Free Speech Movement at the University of California at Berkeley.

    I am continually shocked and dismayed by the nearly Victorian notions promulgated by today’s feminists about the fragility of women and their naive helplessness in asserting control over their own dating lives. Female undergraduates incapable of negotiating the oafish pleasures and perils of campus fraternity parties are hardly prepared to win leadership positions in business or government in the future.

  • The anti-porn crusader Andrea Dworkin (who died a decade ago) was a rabid fanatic, a self-destructive woman so consumed by her hatred of men that she tottered on the edge of psychosis. Dworkin and her puritanical henchman Catharine MacKinnon (born into wealth and privilege) were extremely powerful in the US for a long time, culminating in the major media’s canonisation of MacKinnon in a 1991 New York Times Magazine cover story. When I burst on the scene after the release of my first book in 1990, I attacked Dworkin and MacKinnon with all guns blazing. I am very proud of the role I played in defending free speech and helping the pro-sex wing of feminism to go public and eventually win its great victory over both Dworkin-MacKinnon and the priggish feminist establishment typified by Steinem. Hence the unthinking backward turn of current feminism toward censorship is appalling and tragic. Young feminists seem to have little sense of the crucial battles that were waged and won a quarter century ago.

  • ‘Rape culture’ is a ridiculous term – mere gassy propaganda, too rankly bloated to critique. Anyone who sees sex so simplistically has very little sense of world history, anthropology or basic psychology. I feel very sorry for women who have been seduced by this hyper-politicised, victim-centered rhetoric, because in clinging to such superficial, inflammatory phrases, they have renounced their own power and agency.

    Read the whole thing.

    (Hat tip: Ann Althouse.)

  • Camille Paglia Interview Part 3: Addressing the 2016 Field

    Monday, August 3rd, 2015

    And here’s the third part of that Camille Paglia interview. Here she takes on the 2016 Presidential field. As you might expect from someone who voted for the Green Party in 2012 and who profeses herself a fan of Sen. Dianne Feinstein, her critiques of the Democratic side are a lot more interesting than those of the GOP.

    Democrats

    There are plenty of women Democratic politicians who are too scared to put themselves forward as candidates because of the Clinton machine. There’s something seriously wrong here with Democratic thinking…Given the problems facing the nation, this passive waiting for your turn is simply unacceptable. The Democrats have plenty of solid, capable women politicians who are just too timid to challenge the party establishment. Well, excuse me, that proves they don’t deserve to be president! You sure won’t be able to deal with ISIS if you can’t deal with Debbie Wasserman Schultz!

    More on Hillary:

    Hillary has accomplished nothing substantial in her life. She’s been pushed along, coasting on her husband’s coattails, and every job she’s been given fizzled out into time-serving or overt disaster. Hillary constantly strikes attitudes and claims she’s “passionate” about this or that, but there’s never any sustained follow-through. She’s just a classic, corporate exec or bureaucrat type who would prefer to be at her desk behind closed doors, imposing her power schemes on the proletariat. She has no discernible political skills of any kind, which is why she needs a big, shifting army of consultants, advisors, and toadies to whisper in her ear and write her policy statements.

    Republicans

    She’s not a fan of Ted Cruz: “Ted Cruz–oh, lord! Cruz gives me the willies. The guy is a fanatic! He’s very smart, clever and strategic, and he has a fine education from Princeton, so people have to watch out for him. But I think he is self-absorbed and narcissistic to a maniacal degree.” Paglia also says that “In the primary debates, Cruz will benefit from having a tall and commanding physique.” Commanding presence, yes, but Cruz is around my height (5’10”-ish), which is not generally considered tall for a Presidential contender.

    She’s high on Scott Walker:

    I think that liberals are dangerously complacent about Scott Walker. They’ve tried to portray him as a madman, an uneducated rube, a tool of the Koch brothers. Right now, Walker seems to be the true GOP frontrunner, but I also feel he lacks gravitas. He’s not ready for his close-up. What is this oddity about so many of the GOP candidates–their excessive boyishness, as if their maturation stalled? But Walker is a very talented and combative politician, with far more substance than liberals are allowing for.

    The union issue is huge–because as governor of Wisconsin, Walker went to war with unions and won. Liberals are caught in the past right now in their rosy view of unions, which were heroically established during the progressive era that reformed the abuses of the industrial revolution. But the union battle in Wisconsin had nothing to do with exploited working-class miners or factory workers. In his push to balance the state budget, Walker took action against the middle-class public sector unions, whose negotiations with municipal and state governments outside the arena of private competition have become an enormous drain on local budgets as the economy has worsened. There has been a history of rampant corruption in the public sector unions, coming from their cozy quid pro quo relationships with politicians. Liberals need to wake up about this! All they have to do is read the obituaries of the smaller newspapers in metropolitan New York to see how the early retirement and lavish pensions of the public sector unions have grotesquely drained taxpayer dollars. Obituary after obituary–so-and-so, aged 75, worked for fifteen or twenty years as a policeman or city sanitation worker, retired in his late 40s, and spent the rest of his life on the taxpayer’s dime, pursuing his hobbies of fishing, boating, and golfing. Great work if you can get it!

    And then the teachers’ unions! What a colossal tactical error American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten (a longtime Clinton friend and donor) made several weeks ago in unilaterally declaring her union’s endorsement of Hillary Clinton right in the middle of the Bernie Sanders surge. Probably for the first time ever, American liberals woke up to the corrupt practices that have become way too common in the political maneuverings of the big unions. The point here is that Scott Walker, in his defeat of the public sector unions, drew the roadmap for struggling municipal and state governments everywhere to balance their budgets, as he did in Wisconsin. Because who ends up suffering the most? It’s the kids. All that money outrageously pouring into inflated pension plans has been gutting public education and community arts programs.

    Good to see at least one liberal wake up to the destructive nature of bloated public sector unions. But it’s rather naive of Paglia to express surprise over part of the corrupt wing of the Democratic Party (unions) endorsing the designated candidate of that wing (Hillary) over the candidate of the Party’s insane wing (Bernie Sanders).

    “I thought that Mitt Romney was an excellent choice by the GOP four years ago.” Can’t really say we in the GOP are happy with the way that turned out…

    Camille Paglia Interview Part 2: Media Watch

    Thursday, July 30th, 2015

    And here’s the second part of that Camille Paglia interview. Choice quotes:

  • “‘Sneering at religion is juvenile, symptomatic of a stunted imagination.’ It exposes a state of perpetual adolescence that has something to do with their parents—they’re still sneering at dad in some way.”
  • “All the great world religions contain a complex system of beliefs regarding the nature of the universe and human life that is far more profound than anything that liberalism has produced.”
  • “The real problem is a lack of knowledge of religion as well as a lack of respect for religion. I find it completely hypocritical for people in academe or the media to demand understanding of Muslim beliefs and yet be so derisive and dismissive of the devout Christian beliefs of Southern conservatives.”
  • “I think Stewart’s show demonstrated the decline and vacuity of contemporary comedy. I cannot stand that smug, snarky, superior tone.”
  • “I don’t demonize Fox News. At what point will liberals wake up to realize the stranglehold that they had on the media for so long? They controlled the major newspapers and weekly newsmagazines and T.V. networks. It’s no coincidence that all of the great liberal forums have been slowly fading.”
  • “Liberals think of themselves as very open-minded, but that’s simply not true! Liberalism has sadly become a knee-jerk ideology, with people barricaded in their comfortable little cells. They think that their views are the only rational ones, and everyone else is not only evil but financed by the Koch brothers. It’s so simplistic!”
  • “It is everyone’s obligation, whatever your political views, to look at both liberal and conservative news sources every single day. You need a full range of viewpoints to understand what is going on in the world.”
  • Things Paglia is a fan of: Drudge, Salon, The Guardian and The Daily Mail. Not a fan: Christopher Hitchens.

    Camilia Paglia Interview Pokes Social Justice Warriors Yet Again

    Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

    Given that it’s become such a toxic pit of suck, I rarely link to Salon these days, but I’m making an exception for this interview with Camilia Paglia (evidently only the first of three), in which she talks about feminism, the similarities between accusations against Bill Clinton and Bill Cosby, and other topics.

    Some choice quotes:

  • “The horrible truth is that the feminist establishment in the U.S., led by Gloria Steinem, did in fact apply a double standard to Bill Clinton’s behavior because he was a Democrat. The Democratic president and administration supported abortion rights, and therefore it didn’t matter what his personal behavior was.”
  • “The actual facts of the matter are that Bill Clinton was a serial abuser of working-class women”
  • “Guess what–women are different than men! When will feminism wake up to this basic reality?”
  • I don’t subscribe to Paglia’s reductive Freudianism on display in much the rest of the interview (and which gives Ann Althouse an opportunity to preemptively dismiss her), and I suspect that “barbaric fraternity orgies, where women are sexually assaulted while lying unconscious” are so rare all this century’s confirmed cases can be counted on the fingers of a single hand. But as usual Paglia’s insights, orthogonal as they are to victimhood identity politics feminism, are well worth reading.

    FlashBack: Camille Paglia Interview With Playboy

    Monday, May 25th, 2015

    Instapundit linked to this Playboy with Camille Paglia yesterday. Even though it’s over 20 years old, her bracing assaults on victimhood feminism and political correctness are still pungently quotable:

    “My critics are irrelevant, though. It tells how much I’m getting to them by how vitriolic they are. They refuse to deal with the ideas.”

    On Clarence Thomas: “Any man with five years Of Playboy in his kitchen should be placed on the Supreme Court immediately!”

    The reason women earn less than men is that women don’t want the dirty jobs. They aren’t picking up the garbage, taking the janitorial jobs and so on. They aren’t taking the sales commission jobs that require you to work all night and on weekends. Most women like clean, safe offices, which is why they are still secretaries. They don’t want to get too dirty. Also, women want offices to be nice, happy places. What bullshit. The women’s movement is rooted in the belief that we don’t even need men. All it will take is one natural disaster to prove how wrong that is. Then, the only thing holding this culture together will be masculine men of the working class. The cultural elite–women and men–will be pleading for the plumbers and the construction workers. We are such a parasitic class.

    I began to realize this in the Seventies when I thought women could do it on their own. But then something would go wrong with my car and I’d have to go to the men. Men would stop, men would lift up the hood, more men would come with a truck and take the car to a place where there were other men who would call other men who would arrive with parts. I saw how feminism was completely removed from this reality.

    I also learned something from the men at the garage. At Bennington, I would go to a faculty meeting and be aware that everyone hated me. The men were appalled by a strong, loud woman. But I went to this auto shop and the men there thought I was cute. “Oh, there’s that Professor Paglia from the college.” The real men, men who work on cars, find me cute. They are not frightened by me, no matter how loud I am. But the men at the college were terrified because they are eunuchs, and I threatened every goddamned one of them.

    More:

    You can’t the Stalinist situation we have in America right now, where any neurotic woman can make any stupid charge and destroy a man’s reputation. If there is evidence of false accusation, the accuser should be expelled. Similarly, a woman who falsely accuses a man of rape should be sent to jail. My definition of sexual harassment is specific. It is only sexual harassment–by a man or a woman–if it is quid pro quo. That is, if someone says, “You must do this or I’m going to do that”–for instance, fire you. And whereas touching is sexual harassment, speech is not. I am militant on this. Words must remain free.

    And how’s this for an obvious truthful heresy? “No one gives a fuck about women’s group sports–it embarrasses me to see women’s basketball.”

    As with any Paglia interview, there’s plenty for people on any side of the political spectrum, but her takes on various PC shibboleths are so orthogonal to the mainstream that they’re always worth a look. Read the whole thing.

    Camille Paglia Bashes Weiner, Hillary, Victimhood Feminism, and Foucault

    Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

    Camille Paglia is always good for an orthogonal view on current pieties, and this interview with her (warning: Salon) is no different. She also has a gift for intellectual putdowns that work at a much higher level of reference than Maureen Dowd’s.

    Take, for example, her take on Anthony Weiner:

    Two words: pathetic dork. How sickeningly debased our politics have become that this jabbering cartoon weasel could be taken seriously for a second as a candidate for mayor of New York.

    Hillary Clinton and Benghazi:

    It remains baffling how anyone would think that Hillary Clinton (born the same year as me) is our party’s best chance. She has more sooty baggage than a 90-car freight train. And what exactly has she ever accomplished — beyond bullishly covering for her philandering husband? She’s certainly busy, busy and ever on the move — with the tunnel-vision workaholism of someone trying to blot out uncomfortable private thoughts.

    I for one think it was a very big deal that our ambassador was murdered in Benghazi. In saying “I take responsibility” for it as secretary of state, Hillary should have resigned immediately. The weak response by the Obama administration to that tragedy has given a huge opening to Republicans in the next presidential election. The impression has been amply given that Benghazi was treated as a public relations matter to massage rather than as the major and outrageous attack on the U.S. that it was.

    Throughout history, ambassadors have always been symbolic incarnations of the sovereignty of their nations and the dignity of their leaders. It’s even a key motif in “King Lear.” As far as I’m concerned, Hillary disqualified herself for the presidency in that fist-pounding moment at a congressional hearing when she said, “What difference does it make what we knew and when we knew it, Senator?” Democrats have got to shake off the Clinton albatross and find new blood. The escalating instability not just in Egypt but throughout the Mideast is very ominous. There is a clash of cultures brewing in the world that may take a century or more to resolve — and there is no guarantee that the secular West will win.

    On feminism:

    Oh, feminism is still alive? Thanks for the tip! It sure is invisible, except for the random whine from some maleducated product of the elite schools who’s found a plush berth in glossy magazines. It’s hard to remember those bad old days when paleofeminist pashas ruled the roost. In the late ‘80s, the media would routinely turn to Gloria Steinem or the head of NOW for “the women’s view” on every issue — when of course it was just the Manhattan/D.C. insider’s take, with a Democratic activist spin. Their shameless partisanship eventually doomed those Stalinist feminists, who were trampled by the pro-sex feminist stampede of the early ‘90s (in which I am proud to have played a vocal role). That insurgency began in San Francisco in the mid-‘80s and went national throughout the following decade. They keep dusting Steinem off and trotting her out to pin awards on her, but she’s the walking dead. Her anointed heirs (like Susan Faludi) sure didn’t pan out, did they?

    While it’s a big relief not to have feminist bullies sermonizing from every news show anymore, the leadership vacuum is alarming. It’s very distressing, for example, that the atrocities against women in India — the shocking series of gang rapes, which seem never to end — have not been aggressively condemned in a sustained way by feminist organizations in the U.S. I wanted to hear someone going crazy about it in the media and not letting up, day after day, week after week. The true mission of feminism today is not to carp about the woes of affluent Western career women but to turn the spotlight on life-and-death issues affecting women in the Third World, particularly in rural areas where they have little protection against exploitation and injustice.

    And one need not share her fascination with bondage and discipline to enjoy her artful takedown of the Cult of Foucault:

    My principal complaint about those three books, all from university presses, was that their intriguing firsthand documentation of the BDSM community was pointlessly shot through with turgid, pretentious theorizing, drawn from the slavishly idolized but hopelessly inaccurate and unreliable Michel Foucault.

    In this tight job market, young scholars are in a terrible bind. They have to cater to and flatter the academic establishment if they hope to survive. Furthermore, they have not been taught basic skills in historical investigation, weighing of evidence, and argumentation. There has been a collapse in basic academic standards during the theory era that will take universities decades to recover from. I was incensed that none of those three authors had read a page of the Marquis de Sade, one of the most original and influential writers of the past three centuries. Sade had a major impact on Nietzsche, whom Foucault vainly tried to model himself on. Nor had the three authors read “The Story of O” or explored a host of other crucial landmarks in modern sadomasochism. No, it was Foucault, Foucault, Foucault — a con artist who will one day be a mere footnote in the bulging chronicle of academic follies.

    Paglia can still be spectacularly wrong (such as her neo-Freudian take on Weiner later in that section), but she’s always thought-provoking and never dull. Read the whole thing.

    (Hat tip: Ace.)